Delivered by H.E. Ambassador Lana Nusseibeh, Permanent Representative+

Mr. President,

I thank ICAO President Mr Sciacchitano for his briefing, and at the outset, I would underline that the UAE has engaged in both the ICAO Council and Assembly in relation to the matter before us today.

The 1944 Convention on International Civil Aviation, the Chicago Convention, stresses that the development of international civil aviation can, quote, “greatly help to create and preserve friendship and understanding among the nations and peoples of the world”. These words continue to ring true today. The smooth and safe operation of international civil aviation is vital for international exchange, commerce, and development.

The UAE is keenly aware of the value and importance of the proper functioning of international civil aviation. As a major global aviation hub, we have prioritized civil aviation as an important element in our own economic diversification. The UAE, including as a member of the ICAO Council, strongly supports the need to uphold rules and standards that govern international civil aviation. This centrally includes the aforementioned Chicago Convention and the 1971 Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Civil Aviation, the Montreal Convention.

When there is an incident affecting the safe functioning of civil aviation, it is important to establish the facts, professionally and impartially. The formation by the ICAO Council of the Fact-Finding Investigation Team and its report on the event involving Ryanair Flight FR4978 on 23 May 2021, therefore served a valuable purpose. We appreciate ICAO’s work and the consideration given to this issue by both the ICAO Council and the Assembly.

Mr. President,

It is our firm belief that international civil aviation rules and standards are mutually beneficial to all member states.  We believe they should continue to be dealt with as a technical matter. We reiterate our call for all member states to comply with the applicable conventions and regulations.

The world is in dire need of economic stability and reliability.  We can respond to that need by protecting both the tremendous economic opportunities and the people-to-people connections that international civil aviation affords.

Thank you.